Miss Ella Hunt (5yo SMA type-1) is a bit of a celebrity in her Indiana town–she’s on the news quite a bit, and even went to Washington to testify before the FDA fighting to get the first effective SMA drug (Spinraza) for everyone who needs it.
But for us, she’s just a kid who need to get mobile, and we’re delighted with the progress this week! Here’s Ella’s first attempt at using her power chair with just two switches. More information about links to our in-progress follows the video:
To create the adapter, we used an Adafruit Feather Bluefruit M0 to take two input switches, apply a bit of logic and timing control and then control three outputs via a Relay Board that we designed and built. We’ll make a full guide for this project, but we probably need a waiver of liability form for this one (Erica Hunt, Ella’s mom took ownership of the device before we used it, and was awesome).
Here’s some background if you want to follow the project:
- Long ago and far away, Yahnatan Lasko (Max’s Dad) created a prototype showing that you could control a power chair with just two switches. His design was probably not perfect (it didn’t isolate the chair from the logic well), but it worked!
- When Erica asked for it as well, we had an online design session discussing how it would work and trying to solidify Yahnatan’s design. I discussed Relays & how I thought this should work.
- Here’s the final relay board.
- And here’s the final product in Noe and Pedro Ruiz’s Feather Box (adapted to fit) and all wired up to the power chair:
To follow along on future project like this, please join our ATMakers Facebook Group! At this time, most of the discussion and design work still works there and only solutions that are completed are documented here on the main site. We’re working on improving that – if you’d like to help, please sign up on the home page and let us know!